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Urbanista Phoenix: Wireless earbuds with virtually infinite battery life

The Urbanista Phoenix are the first true wireless earbuds to come with a charging case that can be topped up using any light source

If you’re sick of your true wireless earbuds running out of battery at inopportune moments, you’ll want to keep an eye out for the Urbanista Phoenix, which will be released later this year.

The Phoenix were announced last month but we got hands-on with a pair at the Swedish manufacturer’s stand at IFA in Berlin last week. Like their over-ear stablemates the Urbanista Los Angeles, the Phoenix incorporate a Powerfoyle cell that absorbs solar and ambient light, which is then used to keep the battery topped up.

The cell is built into the Phoenix’s charging case, which makes the case a little larger than most others on the market, but that’s a small price to pay for potentially never having to charge your earbuds from the mains.

If the earbuds themselves look familiar, that’s because they use a very similar design to the noise-cancelling Urbanista London, which were released in 2020 and received our coveted Best Buy award. Like the London, the Phoenix have their audio tuned by former Sennheiser engineer Axel Grell, and will be available for the same affordable price of £129 when they launch later this year.

Solar and ambient light charging is of course the Phoenix’s big selling point, but they’re packing a decent set of specs too, with hybrid ANC, a transparency mode, support for Bluetooth multipoint, in-ear detection, touch controls, IPX4 water resistance and in-ear playtime of eight hours.

They’re compatible with Urbanista’s companion app, and this will sport a few new options to improve the user experience with the Phoenix. The app will keep tabs on how the Phoenix are charged using light sources and provide information to help users find the best methods of getting their buds to gain as much juice as possible. There will also be EQ presets for those that wish to tweak how the Urbanista Phoenix sound.

We liked the look of what we saw of the Urbanista Phoenix at IFA and should be getting our hands on a launch sample ahead of their release in Q4 this year. Until then, you can size up some of the Phoenix’s competition in our roundup of the best true wireless earbuds, or check out some cheaper alternatives on our page dedicated to the top cheap wireless earbuds.

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